Welcome from the Chair

Welcome to Epidemiology! It is the right time to be an epidemiologist.Tamara Dubowitz

The crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic and shootings of Black people have laid bare the health inequities in our country and in the world. Long recognized by epidemiologists, these problems remain unsolved.  What role will epidemiology play?

Epidemiologists discover solutions to public health problems. New solutions are urgently needed. Recent events demonstrate a great need for training in epidemiology and expansion of the public health workforce. Fundamental skills in epidemiology include tracking disease so that epidemics can be recognized, their risk factors identified and interventions designed, tested and disseminated. Our work is directed to the prevention of disease and its progression. Prevention must be evidence-based.

This field is continually evolving. Most recently, we have come to recognize how poor our progress has been in addressing inequities in health and in society. It is critical to continue to identify these disparities, track them, and measure progress. New research, training, and prevention activities are initiated in response to need. Community violence, infectious disease outbreaks, chronic diseases, disparities in reproductive health, and demands for injury control, clean air and water and safer environments, locally and globally are among the many problems being addressed by epidemiologists.

Here in the Department of Epidemiology, we equip our students with the tools to become tomorrow’s public health leaders through engaging curriculum, mentorship, practicum opportunities, and state-of-the-art research opportunities in a location recognized as an international hub for health care innovation and practice—the City of Pittsburgh.

We encourage you to join our growing community of public health investigators and invite you to explore how our graduate programs can help you launch a successful public health career.

We offer two master’s degree programs (MPH or MS) and a PhD program that can be research or practice oriented. Three groups of students are particularly encouraged to apply:

  • Individuals with a variety of prior health-related professional degrees (e.g., physicians, veterinarians, dentists, nurses) who wish to learn more about epidemiological methods and research to enhance their current health professional activities or help them expand into a greater research or teaching role.
  • Those without formal training in the health professions who wish to pursue epidemiology as a first career and pursue a PhD.
  • Students straight from a BS/BA who wish to enter a 45 credit MPH program.

Due to the diversity of our faculty research, our Department offers many major areas of emphasis including:

Aging epidemiology
Applied public health epidemiology
Cancer epidemiology
Cardiovascular and diabetes epidemiology
Clinical trials and methods
Environmental epidemiology
Global health epidemiology
Infectious disease epidemiology

Injury prevention epidemiology
Molecular and genetic epidemiology
Obesity and nutritional epidemiology
Prevention, lifestyle and physical activity epidemiology
Psychiatric epidemiology
Reproductive, perinatal, and pediatric epidemiology
Women’s health epidemiology

Faculty in each of these areas have major research and/or community service programs that provide excellent facilities for student research and field training.

The Department of Epidemiology is also home to two major centers:

  • The Center for Aging and Population Health is a central focus for prevention of age-related disabilities, field investigation and prevention clinical trials.
  • The Epidemiology Data Center coordinates a large number of multi-center clinical trials and registries, and is a focus of expertise in data management and analysis.

I encourage you to contact us with any questions while you are engaged in your application and admissions process. You’re choosing to join a department committed to changing public health for the better.


Tamara Dubowitz, Department Chair